Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Sickle Cell and other Stories

Hey all,

I have figured out why it is so difficult for me to blog these days: Twitter!
It is called micro-blogging for a reason. It allows me to articulate all my thoughts instantly in 140 characters and it is quite frankly my favourite social media platform. But I will try not to let it affect my blogging (2 posts already this year :-)) anymore. Anyway you can follow my twitter ramblings @naijadaydreamer

In other news, I am sure you all know that I am passionate about Sickle Cell Disease. It is something that affects me personally and alot of my close friends and family members. Sickle Cell is not a joke, it has moments when it seems like the worst thing in the world. I have seen it create untold difficulties and hardship for people, and as much as it makes me feel truly blessed that I have had it easy, it always saddens me to see others go through pain.

I joined the Sickle Cell Aid Foundation (@scaf_nigeria) in Law school in 2011 and it has given me the opportunity to make a difference in my own small way to raising awareness about sickle cell. I have gotten the opportunity to meet so many people living with sickle cell and everyone has their own story of their daily struggles. The one thing they all have in common is that it makes them stronger in character. There is something about being weaker physically that makes people more resolute mentally. 

Unfortunately, we lost one of our members Awele a few weeks ago and it was heart breaking. I am only able to write about it now, but it affected me alot more than I was willing to admit because that could easily have been anyone of us. Awele was such a vivacious and greatly loved person and she had so many complications from sickle cell but never let it wear her down. She was very vocal about her battles and eager to raise awareness about it. She won an award for capturing her struggles with sickle cell in a documentary called Awele's Diary. I attended her funeral in London, which happened to be my first funeral, and it was so tough emotionally to watch another person I cared about loose the fight to sickle cell.





But it ultimately renewed my faith and reenforced the importance of doing something worth while with your life while we have the chance. We sometimes get so caught up with daily life and forget to actually be passionate about something. Sickle Cell is my passion, and whenever I leave the world, I hope to have left my mark in advocating for it in my own small way.

To mark World Sickle Cell Day 2015, we had an awareness walk in Awele's memory as well as a blood drive. The founder of SCAF was recently honoured by the Queen of England and David Cameron for being a Young Achiever and it has really validated our work and given us the drive to keep up our advocacy in our own little way.

To every sickle cell warrior, family, friends and supporters of people with sickle cell, we know your pain and we wont stop working until every one does! 











RIP Awele.


xoxo


Miss B

22 comments:

  1. I remember watching the documentary about Awele on YouTube a year ago. It was so heartbreaking when I saw the news on another blog that she'd passed on.

    I viewed the SCAF instagram page, it is such a wonderful, positive initiative. Well done!

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